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Santa's New Sleigh © ~ A Chuckles & Buckley Adventure continues . . .

     Golly watched from a vantage point high up on a limb of one of the spruce trees he was guarding. He was invisible and silent as a snowflake, so the elves had no idea that he was there. When the last tree was dropped and trimmed of limbs, it was loaded onto the sledge. Golly was gleefully rubbing his hands together at the prospect of causing these elves a heap of trouble. The elves were very uncomfortable while they worked. Golly was staring at the backs of their necks with such intensity that the elves could feel it.

     The feeling of being watched made them nervous, causing them to work faster. The pressure of Golly’s stare caused them to make mistakes while they worked and it was by luck alone that none of the elves seriously injured themselves. Once the last log was loaded, the elves breathed a sigh of relief.

The Elves felt Golly staring at them


  With Golly’s help, the trip back was even more miserable than the trip out. Various pieces of the sledge weakened and broke. The elves got confused about directions and went around in circles for awhile. All in all it was a miserable time.

      Had there been older elves there, they would have recognized the work of a gremlin immediately, but these younger elves had no clue. Eventually, however they got back on the right track and it was a weary, beat-up bunch of elves who pulled up to the North Pole shop doors. They shuffled inside and were met by Chuckles and Buckley. The leader pointed out the door and said, “There's your logs.” He didn’t say another word and neither did any of the other elves. Buckley organized another work party to unload the logs and move them inside.

    “What do you suppose is wrong with them?” Chuckles wondered out loud. “They look like they were in a fight and lost. Not a one of them has an ounce of ‘jolly’ left in them anywhere.”

    “A good nights rest and good food will go a long way toward restoring them to their usual jolly selves. We need to let Santa know that the wood is here.” said Buckley. He sent a runner elf to tell Santa and before long,the thudding of big Santa boots could be heard outside the shop doors.

     Santa swept into the shop followed by a young blonde girl with sparkles in her sky blue eyes. She wore a wreath of holly in her hair and she looked like she was covered in frost. Her long gown flowed around her as she moved. It was only after the elves had seen her that they noticed the look on Santa’s face. His cheeks weren’t very rosy and he wasn’t acting very jolly either. In fact, he looked a little worried. If you knew Santa, then you would know that he never looked worried, so something must be very wrong for Santa to look the way he did.Holly Winter
   
    “First of all”, Santa announced, “I want you all to meet one of Mother Nature’s four children. This is Holly Winter and she has brought us some bad news. The trees you cut, came from gremlin territory. The Gremlin King went to Mother Nature this morning to tell her that two of the gremlin trees had been stolen and that the gremlin who was guarding them is missing. I want to speak to the elf in charge of the work party right now.”
  
  The leader elf was summoned. He showed up in his pajamas looking very sleepy and very confused. When he saw Santa’s face, he paled.

    “Where exactly did you cut the trees you brought back?” The elf explained that he didn’t know for sure because he didn’t actually know where they were when the trees were cut.

    “Why not?” Santa asked, “We sent a map with you that told you exactly where to go?” The elf explained their story and Santa nodded in understanding. He looked to Holly Winter for confirmation and she gave one nod back to him.

    “Fellas, we have a problem,” he said. “You have confirmed what we feared is true. I am appealing to Mother Nature to help us with this problem. Gremlins are under Mother Nature’s supervision indirectly, and so we really need her help. She is listening to this conversation through Holly Winter, and can answer us back the same way.” Santa looked to Holly Winter for consent.

Window of Santa's Workshop where Golly looked inside
     “She says she will do what she can," explained Holly Winter, "The Gremlin King is  with her right now. He understands how mistakes can be made and is sympathetic, but  he says he really has no control over Golly because he cannot communicate with him  right now. He is out of gremlin communication range. It is possible, that once Golly left  the forest, he lost his ability to hear us." Santa thanked her as she went on, “Mother  says that you may have my services here for as long as I am needed.” Santa offered his thanks and they got straight to business.

Meanwhile, Golly Gremlin had remained with the trees on the sledge and watched the meeting from outside through the window and did not hear what had been discussed. Golly knew he couldn’t do a thing while the jolly old elf was in the shop. He was barred from interfering with any of the Spirits and Santa was, after all, the Spirit of Christmas Joy.               


               

                . . . continued                

                                  

 

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